News Worms
News Worms

Lawmakers grill former Equifax CEO

Lawmakers grill former Equifax CEO

The partnership between the IRS and Equifax, which have both been hit by high-profile data breaches, received bipartisan flak from Senate and House members. At least one state, Massachusetts, and the cities of San Francisco and Chicago have sued Equifax as well.

In a statement to Politico, the IRS said: "Following an internal review and an on-site visit with Equifax, the IRS believes the service Equifax provided does not pose a risk to IRS data or systems".

Lawmakers not only expressed outrage about the breach, but how the consumer credit reporting agency responded.

Recently-and-forcibly-retired Equifax CEO Rick Smith has laid the blame for his credit-check biz's IT security breach on a single member of the company's security team.

Representative Frank Pallone Jr., Democrat of New Jersey, called for Congress to pass legislation that would do more to protect consumers whose personal data is stolen in such breaches.

Equifax disclosed the breach of the date of up to 143 million Americans on 7 September.

Just when consumers were coming to grips with the financial debacle that is the Equifax data breach, the number of people affected by it continues to soar.

On its Twitter account, Equifax initially directed consumers to "", a fake site created by an outside software engineer.

"The company has been around for 118 years and for most of those 118 years has done good things", Smith said.

Smith, who stepped down from the company last week, told Scott that the executives followed protocol.

"I'm here today to each and every person affected by this breach - I'm truly and deeply sorry for what happened", said Smith.

Greg Walden, the Oregon Republican who chairs the larger Committee, pressed Smith on how it happened that the company learned that it needed to patch software used on part of its consumer-facing website - a portal to process consumer disputes - but did not do so.

On Aug. 2, the same day King & Spalding was hired, Kelly approved two additional stock sales by Joseph Loughran, Equifax's president for USA information solutions and Rodolfo Ploder, president of workforce solutions, Smith said.

Smith said he would be amenable to rethinking the role that Social Security numbers play in identity verification. They have made themselves indispensable to the smooth functioning of the US economy by collecting reams of essential information about consumers - without their consent - and selling it to banks, auto dealers, mortgage lenders and other companies that deal with the public in some way. Customers were confused and angered by a troubling tool Equifax created for checking if individuals were affected by the attack.

Hackers ultimately exploited the Struts bug on Equifax's systems to infiltrate the organization and swipe sensitive personal records, including social security numbers, of more than 140 million folks in the US, UK and Canada.


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